Of colds, cooties and disposable towels (and Friday tip for inexpensive elegance)
With cold and flu season just around the corner, there’s bound to be lots of talk about how to prevent the spread of germs. And just like your mummy, Health Canada says washing your hands will go a long way to preventing transmission of illness.
I'm with them on that. But what to do when it comes to drying your hands at home? Our collective fear of cooties may be behind the launch of a disposable hand towel from Kleenex . It’s marketed as a convenient and hygienic alternative to cloth towels. Made from ink-, dye- and fragrance-free papers, the sheets come in a pop-up dispenser. A box of 60 sells for about $3.50.
While I agree that paper towels are useful in public (I detest all air dryers except the one made by Dyson), I don’t think I’m ready to use disposables in the home. I tend to change my hand towels fairly regularly anyway. Instead of heavier towels that take a while to dry, I use plain white linen towels that I pick up at flea markets and thrift shops. I also use mismatched, over-sized table napkins found at the same kinds of spots. They’re cheap, easy to store and to my mind, easy to keep clean. I just throw a bunch in the wash once a week and dry them outside in summer and on an indoor line in winter. Do I iron them? Of course not! But I do sometimes spray them with homemade lavender linen water.
If you are really concerned about keeping towels separate during flu season, you could divide up linens, sew on monogrammed initials for each member of the family and give each person one hook in the bath or powder room. Speaking of - check out the classic coat hooks from Lee Valley Tools. Very pretty, no?
I don’t know, maybe after four kids, I’ve just developed a lassez-faire attitude towards all this. What do you think?